Children who bicycle to and from school need to know proper bus safety protocol. This can help to keep them safe, but they will still depend on drivers to follow the laws. Some people are so focused on getting to where they need to go that they forget that children might not make the best decisions as they ride. For this reason, it is imperative that all drivers remember to err on the side of caution when kids are around.
There are several things that children can do to increase their safety on bikes. Parents of younger children might need to remind them of these more often than those who have older children. One thing that all parents must ensure is that their children aren’t riding without an adult until they are able to safely ride on their own.
Wear the right gear
Children who are riding a bicycle to school will still need to wear a uniform if necessary, but they also need other gear. They should always wear a helmet. This should be non-negotiable in all cases. They also need to have something brightly colored to make them easier to see. This can be a neon helmet or even a safety vest. They should have on sturdy shoes, too.
Pick a safe route
Before your child bikes to school, you need to show them the route they should take. Ride the route with them a few times so you are certain they know it. Let them know that deviating from it isn’t permitted. If something happens and they aren’t home on time or haven’t made it to school when they should, you will know where to look for them.
Know the basic safety rules
Children should always keep their hands on the handlebars and pay close attention to what is going on around them. Because they have to ride on the road near cars, they need to remember to never ride against the flow of traffic and always use a bike lane when they are available. Car doors can open, so they don’t need to ride too close to parked vehicles. They also must obey all the same laws as vehicles, including stopping at red lights and stop signs. They should only cross the road at intersections and look both ways before crossing the street.
If a child on a bike is struck by a vehicle, they will likely need medical care. This can lead to costly bills and their parents having to take time off work. The parents might decide to seek compensation from the driver if negligent or reckless behavior was a factor in the accident.